West Indies have announced a 13-man squad for the one-off T20I against India at Sabina Park, Kingston on July 9. Chris Gayle, the highest run-getter in T20s, makes a comeback to the national time for the first time since the World T20 final in April 2016.
“We welcome Chris Gayle back to the T20 squad. He is the most prolific batsman in this format and will add value to our team at the top of the order. He will get the chance to play on his home ground and against a top-quality Indian team”, said Courtney Browne, Cricket Windies’ Chairman of Selectors, and Gayle’s teammate from their 2004 Champions Trophy win.
“This squad has a good mix – experience within the batting and bowling – it is a well-balanced squad. Again, this is an opportunity for the young players to showcase their talent and for the experience players to perform and help nurture the young players”, he added.
Gayle entered the team by replacing Lendl Simmons, the right-handed batsman who collected a total of 39 runs in three games against Afghanistan in West Indies’ last T20I series.
The side features a number of senior players in the form of Kieron Pollard, Jerome Taylor, Sunil Narine and Marlon Samuels. They will be led by Carlos Brathwaite, the hero of West Indies’ World T20 final win against England last year.
Gayle, who recently became the only player in the world to complete 10,000 T20 runs, was part of the World T20 winning side but hasn’t represented the side ever since. With 1519 runs in exactly 50 T20Is, Gayle is the leading run-getter for his side in the shortest format, having scored two centuries and 13 half-centuries. He, however, is yet to play a T20I game at the Sabina Park.
The ODI series preceding the one-off T20I is currently underway, with the Indian team leading 2-1 after the end of the fourth match. The visitors will have the same squad for the T20I as well and will be led by Virat Kohli.
The last time these two teams played T20Is against each other was in Florida in 2016, where the West Indies clinched the series 1-0.
Here’s the complete West Indies squad:
Carlos Brathwaite (captain), Samuel Badree, Ronsford Beaton, Chris Gayle, Evin Lewis, Jason Mohammed, Sunil Narine, Kieron Pollard, Rovman Powell, Marlon Samuels, Jerome Taylor, Chadwick Walton (wk), Kesrick Willams.